Red Rich

Leading Australian fresh fruit company Red Rich Fruits has opened its new, purpose-built packing and distribution centre in Coldstream, Victoria.

The 12,000m2 facility – which will primarily be used to handle apples and pears – has the capacity to pack 50,000 bins of fruit each year, doubling the company’s packing capacity in the region, while creating new employment opportunities.

The fit-out includes MAF Roda’s Globalscan G7 optical grader, believed to be the first used for apples in Australia. It also includes a 13-lane water pre-sizer, internal defect sorter, and speed packer for apple punnets.

Red Rich Fruits’ owner and director, Michael Napoleone, said the new facility would further improve the company’s ability to supply consistently high-quality product as it moves into the future.

“Our commitment to quality, reliability and customer satisfaction has been at the heart of everything we do at Red Rich Fruits, since we planted our first orchards in Wandin in 1948,” said Napoleon. “Our new facility and state-of-the-art equipment will enable us to pack more fruit faster, while improving on quality, as the business continues to grow.”

Built on a greenfield site along the Maroondah Highway, beside some of the company’s existing orchards, the new packhouse will soon be surrounded by plantings of the WA38 apple cultivar (marketed as Cosmic Crisp). Red Rich secured the exclusive rights to grow and market the variety in Australia last year.

Read more about Red Rich Fruits' new Coldstream facility, and its plans for Cosmic Crisp, in the upcoming Autumn edition of Produce Plus.